Martin Keown has spoken in glowing terms of Ivan Perisic after the Tottenham man picked up two assists in Croatia’s 4-1 win over Canada.

After being held to a 0-0 draw by Morocco in their first group game, Croatia needed to respond against the Canadians and they were facing the possibility of an early exit when Alphonso Davies gave the North American side the lead. 

Ivan Perisic

(Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

However, the 2018 World Cup runners-up responded brilliantly, with Perisic being heavily involved in their comeback. 

The Tottenham man, who started on the left of the front three, played an intelligent through ball from the edge of the box for Andrej Kramaric to run onto in the 36th minute, with the striker producing an emphatic finish.

Perisic also set up Croatia’s third and Kramaric’s second as he cut in from the left and picked out the Hoffenheim star with a pin-point cross, with the forward taking a touch before slamming the ball home.

Keown lavished praise on the 33-year-old for the part he played in both of Kramaric’s goals.

The Arsenal legend said on BBC Match of the Day (28/11/22) about Perisic: “He (Johnston) did quite well there. He had been left in a one-on-one situation, more than a couple of times now. Perisic is not quite the player he once was, as we know. But he can still whip a ball in.

On the Spurs star’s first assist, Keown said: “Well, we said the door was opening. That passing. They punish you. They are zipping it around. Lovely little movement. Look at that for a reverse pass from Perisic. Then Kramaric comes onto it and tucks it into that far corner, a really wonderful finish.”

The pundit said regarding Croatia’s third goal: “Just look at how empathic this is. Perisic stands up his opponent. He really wants to go wide with this. He just cuts inside. The weight of pass and then look at for a first touch from Kramaric, lets it sit and then rocks it into the far corner. The calmness.”

Spurs Web Opinion

Perisic’s decision-making when he is one vs one with a defender on the left is quite sublime as the wily Croat always knows which way to go depending on the defender’s body shape to make a yard for himself. We know that the quality of his crossing is second to none.

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